Print 56 comment(s) - last by ShinoOoo.. on Feb 26 at 11:57 PM

You can run but you can't hide from the MPAA

The Motion Picture Association of America, Inc. (MPAA) has expanded its crackdown on online movie piracy by filing seven new lawsuits against online sites. Websites targeted include,,,,,,, and

“Website operators who abuse technology to facilitate infringements of copyrighted works by millions of people are not anonymous – they can and will be stopped. Disabling these powerful networks of illegal file distribution is a significant step in stemming the tide of piracy on the Internet,” said John G. Malcolm, Executive Vice President and Director of Worldwide Anti-Piracy Operations for the MPAA.

You can read more here. (PDF)

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MPAA/RIAA need to take a math class.
By Sunrise089 on 2/24/2006 1:32:46 AM , Rating: 5
Regardless of the morality of music/movie piracy, I hate the way these companies count how much money was "lost" due to piracy. Just because someone downloaded a album does not mean he/she was going to purchase it for $13. If they would look at any supply/demand curve they would see that for a highly elastic good (luxeries like movie tickets) as price goes up quantity demanded goes down sharply. This is the same reason free samples cannot be equated to potential purchases. If someone has the option to download a slong for free they will only require a little desire to download the song. If the song costs a fai amount of money it will have to be more important to them before they make the purchase. The MPAA and RIAA do not choose to recognize this fact.

By Eomer of Aldburg on 2/24/2006 2:11:00 AM , Rating: 2
Thats a very good point, never thought of it like that!

RE: MPAA/RIAA need to take a math class.
By abhaxus on 2/24/2006 2:16:30 AM , Rating: 3
You're exactly right of course. Both industries would be better served by lowering the cost of their goods in return for higher sales. But you really can't compete with the "free" that piracy offers.

That said, I do download both music and movies on a regular basis. I buy the movies I consider the most important, and same with music. I think the movie industry is starting to go through the same thing the music industry has been going through... that is, a lack of good material. 2005 was a dismal year in terms of movie quality. There is no way in hell I would buy a movie like Fantastic Four, or Dukes of Hazzard. However I did purchase 40 y/o virgin and wedding crashers, and of course the special edition of Batman Begins.

They just need to get a better product out.

By Jellodyne on 2/24/2006 9:33:47 AM , Rating: 2
There's no better example of this than DVD -- Used to be VHS was expensive and relatively poor quality, and the box retailers only had a small selection. DVD comes along with better quality movies at a $20 price point and the studios now make more on the DVD sales than the ticket sales. And now that the price points are dropping to $15, $10 or even $5 for catalog titles they're seeing more money than then ever.

RE: MPAA/RIAA need to take a math class.
By MScrip on 2/24/2006 1:00:15 PM , Rating: 2
But you really can't compete with the "free" that piracy offers.

A free illegal MP3 can take the place of a purchased song and sound just as good to most people... But I don't think that a 700mb AVI file of a movie is the equivalent of a movie ticket or a DVD. I'm just not believing that people are choosing downloading movies over theaters or DVDs. They are not competing with "free" they are just not going at all. The loss in Hollywood is people just not going to sucky movies or buying DVDs.

While a free MP3 sounds like the CD version, a downloaded movie shares nothing with the theater or DVD version.

RE: MPAA/RIAA need to take a math class.
By masher2 on 2/24/2006 2:19:27 PM , Rating: 2
For many people, a downloaded movie can and _does_ take the place of purchasing the real thing. The quality difference between a 700mb divx version and the full DVD is minimal...and indeed, some people download an iso image of the full DVD.

RE: MPAA/RIAA need to take a math class.
By MScrip on 2/24/2006 2:58:10 PM , Rating: 3
True, downloads can look good. But, the mojority of consumers are not downloading movies. Think of all the technically challenged people who can't even burn a CD, let alone download torrents and burn a DVD.

My very first post on this topic talks about the people who still go to movies and buy DVDs. Those people make up the mojority of movie watchers.

Finding Nemo, one of the most popular kids movies of all times, sold $136 million of DVDs its first day of sales! Was it available to download? Sure, weeks before retail... but somehow it still sold hundreds of millions of dollars of DVDs.

Sure, many people download movies... but MOST people get their movies by purchasing them.

And, if a movie does poorly at the box office... it's not because people downloaded it... it's because it sucked.

Now, a tiny percentage of tech-savvy people might have downloaded it instead of going to see it... but that's a far cry from the entire viewing public.

By masher2 on 2/24/2006 4:50:39 PM , Rating: 2
The only reason movie receipts aren't being negatively impacted by downloads yet is that few people have sufficient bandwidth to easily engage in the practice.

All this aside, it doesn't really change the primary point. Whether downloads are good, bad, or neutral for the industry, they're still illegal and unethical. And the industry has a right to stop them.

By Christopher1 on 2/25/2006 12:53:16 AM , Rating: 1
That quote that "you can't compete with free" is not really true.
I would GLADLY pay for the peace of mind that I am downloading a file at a reasonable price that I can be sure will be free of viruses, spyware and other nasties.

But notice that 'reasonable' stipulation. The MPAA and RIAA don't want to give a reasonable price, they want the same overly inflated fixed prices that they have been getting in stores.

By bob661 on 2/24/2006 2:13:07 PM , Rating: 2
Batman Begins.
Oh. Forgot about that movie. That was a good one.

RE: MPAA/RIAA need to take a math class.
By DrMrLordX on 2/24/2006 3:02:06 AM , Rating: 2
They also fail to take into account that file-sharing piracy, either via the Internet, a local network, or portable media has a "free advertising" effect similar to "word-of-mouth" advertising. The single best way to hook someone on your product is to give them(or inadvertantly let them) get ahold of it at no cost. One guy juarezes a game, loves it, and hooks his buddies on it. Soon, copies of the game are sold that might never have been purchased. I see it happen all the time, especially when you have games with activation keys that can only be played offline when pirated, but can be played online by way of a peering service only if a legit key is used during installation. NWN was a good example of this for me. I bought the base game ages ago, pirated the expansions, then went back and bought the Platinum Edition(base game + both expansions) to play online with friends on Persistant World(PW) servers. Bioware got my money even though I pirated it. Several of my friends got their money, too.

This so-called piracy feeds into unintended viral marketting processes that actually INCREASE SALES for software, music, and television/movie DVDs. To what extent, I do not know, but the effect is there. It is possible that publishers of popular content might actually lose money if all so-called piracy stopped.

By masher2 on 2/24/2006 10:19:21 AM , Rating: 1
What a way to justify theft and piracy. That's like a guy claiming his theft of a few XBox 360s were only intended to "get the word out" on how good the product was.

By bob661 on 2/24/2006 2:14:53 PM , Rating: 1
Is that spanish?

By clubok on 2/24/2006 10:20:50 PM , Rating: 2
There's an important difference here, one you point out yourself. Pirating NWN works fine for playing single-player, but you need a legit key to play online. So the pirated copy was enough to suck you in, but not enough to give you full functionality. In a sense, the pirated copy worked like a demo copy for you.

The difference is that when you download a movie, there is little more to be gained by buying it - especially if you get an ISO image.

That said, I suspect that a fairer way to count lost revenue from file sharing would be to assume that the piracy replaces rentals - not sales. My guess is that most people downloading a movie just want to watch it once - not keep a permanent copy. (Again, a major difference from NWN, with its near-infinite replay value.) I bet that a lot of people download movies not because it is cheaper than renting, but more convenient than taking a trip to the video store or library. If the torrent sites went down, many of them would simply rent the movies. And those who did want permanent copies would simply copy the rental.

"It seems as though my state-funded math degree has failed me. Let the lashings commence." -- DailyTech Editor-in-Chief Kristopher Kubicki

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